D-Day – 15 Stunning Photos & Footage of Allied Airborne Forces
6th June 1944, Operation Overlord, D-Day and Airborne Landings
On this day, more than half a century ago, Operation Overlord began, marking the beginning of Europe’s liberation from Nazi control.
A year of planning and preparations finally came to a head.
Over 13,000 Paratroopers, almost 4,000 glider troops and 6,000 USAAF crew made their way to France on 6
th June. Soon after midnight, the first paratroopers were dropped and gliders landed all over Normandy.
Here are 15 amazing pictures from that fateful day.
A Day Earlier
Dwight Eisenhower meets with 1st Lieutenant Wallace C. Strobel and men of Company E, 502nd Parachute Infantry Regiment prior to their night jump into Normandy
Preinvasion bombing of Pointe du Hoc
Private Ware applies last-second war paint to Private Plaudo in England, June 1944
Fully Equipped paratrooper armed with a Thompson submachine gun M1, climbing into a transport plane to go to France as the invasion of Normandy gets under way. A few minutes after midnight, over Normandy
Parachute troops line the inside of a Armstrong Whitworth Albemarle.
Airborne troops prepare for the descent on Europe of D-Day invasion June 6, 1944. View from interior of a glider
C-47 Skytrain transport aircraft in route to Normandy. After delivery of paratroopers, the planes returned to tow glider serials
A Halifax towing a Hamilcar glider on the 6th June. Credit: Museum of Army Flying.
C-47s of the 9th Air Force Troop Carrier Command tow reinforcements in CG-4 gliders across the Normandy beaches on June 6, 1944
Finally at their target – Airborne Landings!
Airborne paratroopers jump from a C-47 in a training exercise. A year of intense training could not fully prepare these soldiers for what they would see in Normandy.
Gliders are delivered to the Cotentin Peninsula by Douglas C-47 Skytrains. 6 June 1944
Airspeed Horsa gliders on Landing Zone ‘N’, 7 June 1944
82nd Airborne Troops by the church in Sainte-Mère-Église Normandy. The same church where John Steele was caught on the spire
American paratrooper, among the first to make successful landings on the continent, holds a Nazi flag captured in a village assault. Utah Beach, St. Marcouf, France. 8 June 1944
Situation map for 24:00, 6 June 1944
To compliment the photographs above, here is real footage from the day itself.
Damian is a history geek that’s working for War History Online for almost a decade. He can talk about the history and its chain of events for hours and is 100% legit fun at parties. Aside of history, geography and etymology of all things are no less exciting for him! An avid video game player, meme distributor, and your comment section moderator all in one. Mythologies of all cultures are fascinating to him, Greek, Nordic, Slavic – you name it, and he’s in!
In his spare time, assuming he has some left, he gives it all to his family, enjoying morning walks, a good book, an exciting FPS, and a long nap…or a few. Definitely a cat person.